Your Guide to Holiday SEO

The Holiday season is right on top of us (how did that happen!?) and while we all know that the holidays are all about family and celebrating what we are thankful for, we also can’t deny that it’s a popular shopping season. As consumers hit the web to do their shopping either on Black Friday,…

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    The Holiday season is right on top of us (how did that happen!?) and while we all know that the holidays are all about family and celebrating what we are thankful for, we also can’t deny that it’s a popular shopping season. As consumers hit the web to do their shopping either on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or a few days before Christmas, if you’re a retailer hoping to grab their business, you need to be ready. This means prepping your local SEO for the holiday rush. It’s not hard and many of these tips only take a few minutes. Let’s take a look at what you can do to get your website ready for a little holiday SEO. 

    Update Your Holiday Hours on Your Google Business Page

    If you have extended hours to accommodate the holiday rush, you want your customers to know it. You also want your customers to know if you’re closed on certain days so they don’t show up. The mobile search for “store hours” increases significantly around the holidays and Google makes it easy to find the answer by displaying a store’s hours with their location and phone number. It’s your job to make sure those hours are accurate. 

    Store Hours are an important part of your year-round local SEO 

    To update your holiday hours and improve your holiday SEO:

    • Sign in to your Google My Business account
    • Select the location you need to manage
    • Select the Special Hours section
    • You can choose to confirm hours next to an upcoming holiday or add a new date
    • Enter your opening and closing times 
    • When you’re done, click Apply
    • That’s it!

    You’ll also follow a similar process on Yelp, just log in to your Yelp For Business account and head to the Business Information section. 

    Stay on Top of Review Responses

    Things are about to get crazy if you’re in retail. While you still have the time, it’s a good idea to take a look at any reviews that may warrant a response and reply to them now. That way, when consumers are deciding where to do their shopping, they’ll see that you care about responding to customers and addressing concerns. 

    Did you know 97% of consumers say reviews factor into their buying decisions?35% say that one negative review can make them decide not to buy. 

    But imagine if that negative review was accompanied by a positive response from the company. Maybe that would factor into their decision. Many may even change their review if they get a resolution to their problem. Most customers aren’t trying to cause problems, they are just looking for solutions. 

    Getting ahead also means gathering reviews. Because no reviews are almost worse than bad reviews. So get on top of curating and responding to reviews right now to make sure your future customers get the right impression about your business.

    Local SEO is important year-round. Stay on top of yours with our 6-Step Plan

    Schedule Out Your Social Media

    You social channels should remain active throughout the holiday rush (76% of consumers have purchased a product they saw in a social media post) but you don’t want to spend your holiday time posting to Facebook or Instagram. So take the time now to create and schedule the rest of your posts for 2019! You can schedule posts using tools like Meet Edgar or Hootsuite. 

    Get ahead of social media and give yourself more time to get to the other items on your list (and check it twice!). 

    Promote Now!

    Make sure you’re promoting any Black Friday or Cyber Monday offers right now. The more information you have about them on your website, the more likely users are to find them when they are Googling. This might mean having an entire page on your website devoted to holiday deals.  Make it easy for consumers to find your deals once they’re active. 

    Optimize for Speed and Mobile

    Don’t let a slow site drive your customers away. If your mobile site takes more than three seconds to load, users are likely to head to another site. If the images on your site won’t load because there’s too much traffic, you’re going to lose sales. Before the rush, make sure your website and your mobile site can handle the traffic that will be coming their way in the next few weeks. 

    Be Ready To Follow Up

    You’ll probably get a lot of new customers during the holidays. If you want those new customers to become frequent customers, make sure you’re giving them the right incentive. Set up automated emails thanking them for their purchases and maybe even offering a deal on future purchases. Ask them to leave review if they’re satisfied and make sure to follow up in a few weeks to make sure they are happy with their purchase. A simple thank you could turn a one-time customer into a lifetime customer. 

    Now is the time to make sure your holiday SEO is ready to attract new customers to your site. But local SEO is always important. Not sure yours is up to par? Learn more.

    Allison Spooner

    Allison Spooner is a professional content creator and author. She helps authors & writers find their voices as Creative Warriors.

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